Title: Under the Influence of Djinn
Summary: AU: The Djinn siblings created a terrible detailed nightmare for Dean out of revenge, nearly killing him, Lisa, and Ben. With Sam alive, Castiel missing, and Campbell cousins in tow, he tries to pull himself back together.
Disclaimer: Supernatural was created by Eric Kripke. No disrespect in intended with this work of fan fiction.
Jo glanced up from the novel to find that, not only was Castiel awake, he was sitting up on the edge of the bed giving the wall a suspicious stare. "Hey there. I see Sleeping Beauty woke up all by himself."
He looked at her, the suspicious stare remaining. "You're not Ellen." Disappointment colored his voice.
Castiel's stare slid down to her chest and he heaved a heavy sigh. "You're not Ellen," he repeated.
Was he ogling her chest? His attention was, without a doubt, right there on her girls. Jo glanced down at her breasts, which were definitely nowhere near as big as her mother's. "Obviously."
With a snort, he returned his attention to the wall. "Figures. Raphael would 'screw me over' on that."
The words 'screw me over' were spoken like there were mental finger quotes around them. "Somehow I'm guessing I'm not who you were expecting."
"Wow." She blinked. "I remember you as being nicer, Castiel."
He shook his head. "I mean that he focused on Ellen, forced my memories of her to the surface. Therefore, naturally I assumed…. Never mind."
She closed her book. "You know what happens when you assume."
"No, I don't. What happens?" Raising a hand, he scratched his forefinger against his temple.
"You really don't know the saying?"
"It does sound familiar," he admitted.
"You…make an ass out of 'u' and 'me'."
He didn't even crack a smile, nodding. "I see. A play on the word itself. Clever."
"Can't take credit for it. I think it was from an episode of 'The Odd Couple'." She set the book aside. "So, not to complain in your first five minutes awake, but why the hell am I here anyway? I was dead and sort of enjoying my afterlife…as well as one can enjoy it. Not too thrilled to be back in the game." An understatement really. She'd found herself longing for the peace she'd had in heaven as the hours had passed.
One hand moved to rest on the bedspread. "I never intended for your rest to be disturbed."
"Only my mother's?"
His frown deepened. "Raphael told me to pick a companion from any in human heaven, one to show me human ways."
"And you wanted that companion to be my mom?"
"She was logical, though I did try not to think of anyone at all."
"So how did you end up with me?"
One shoulder lifted in a shrug. "It's just like Raphael to claim to be generous and merciful and choose you for me simply because we didn't get along."
"We didn't get along?" Sort of news to her and not exactly how she remembered it.
"Not like Ellen and I. Ellen understood me in those few hours. You, Jo, didn't."
"Gee, thanks. Way to bolster a girl's ego. You know, I can always leave if you don't want me here."
"I never said that. Besides, Raphael gave you to me. You should stay."
Gave? "Yeah, you did say it. Your tone conveyed it pretty well and let's get one thing straight right now. I don't belong to anyone."
He grimaced. "I didn't mean to imply that you did. I meant…." Castiel bowed his head and ran a hand through his hair. He took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "I apologize, Jo. I'm not myself right now. May we start over?"
She watched him. He was holding himself so upright it looked like he had a yardstick strapped to his spine. Maybe if she let him start over he'd be nicer. "Go for it."
"Thank you. You began with calling me Sleeping Beauty. The title is familiar, yet I can't think of what it means at present. My response should have been…Hello, Jo Harvelle. I apologize for the inconvenience of your soul being pulled from heavenly rest and placed back in your re-formed body. I trust you aren't suffering from the wounds you died from?"
"Nope. All my internal organs are right where they should be."
"Good." He turned his head, looking at her again. His hair was standing straight up from where his hand had run through it. "I will endeavor to answer your questions now."
"Okay. Let's start with what happened to you? In fact, what happened period? Everything's still here, so I suppose the apocalypse didn't happen. Did Sam and Dean stop it? Did the Colt kill Lucifer? Ash said something to me about them popping in for a quick visit?"
His explanation was a recitation of facts that was nowhere near as comprehensive as she would have liked, ending with recent events.
They leaned against the hood of one of the cars, Sam popping open a beer and handing it to Dean. Christian was still pouring over that book of Bobby's while Mark dozed on the couch, and Gwen had sweet talked Bobby into giving her a tour of Sioux Falls. Sam still wasn't sure how she'd managed that one, nor did he expect Bobby to warm to any of the Campbell kin. He didn't blame him. All three had their moments of being rather annoying and/or unlikable. He hoped Gwen was still on her best behavior or she might end up walking back from town.
Sam studied Dean, trying to decide where to start and finally began with, "You want to explain these little freak-outs you've been having?" If he was being honest, they were little and big both. Someone would say something and Dean would act all weird for awhile.
Dean's shoulders lifted in a shrug, his gaze moving over the rows and stacks of vehicles around them.
"Come on. Out with it. What's going on with you?" He planned to pry it from Dean if he had to, force him to have one of those 'girlie heart-to-hearts' if that's what it took to get to the bottom of this.
Dean took a long pull from the bottle. "The Djinn, Sam. It's all about the Djinn."
"What about them?"
He sighed and hoisted himself up to sit instead of lean on the car. "For starters, they gave me this weird ass dream."
Something Sam already knew.
"In it, they'd captured me and you showed up, stopped them. You had the cousins with you and…there was Samuel."
"That explains the Samuel questions." There'd been a lot of Samuel questions, like where did Sam think Samuel was, up or down? Had Sam ever gotten the impression gramps had a bizarre fixation on mom? Did Sam think Samuel ever would have sold them out to a demon? They weren't questions Sam had been able to answer.
"You weren't yourself. No soul. You were pulled out without it. That soullessness made you act like an animal on instinct alone, except, man…. Your instincts sucked." His free hand moved, gesturing as he continued. "You had the worst judgment, killing civilians if they got in the way of taking down the monsters, attacking Bobby…."
"Attacking Bobby? Our Bobby?"
He made a noise that indicated Sam really shouldn't ask for more details on that.
"Sounds like some doozey of a dream."
"Tell me about it. That's not even a quarter of it."
Dean had been watching him pretty closely since waking, scrutinizing every tiny thing he did, barraging him with questions. Hadn't been difficult to figure out that it had something to do with this dream and now he understood why. If he'd had a dream like that about Dean he would have been watching him, too, just to make sure. "A person can't live without a soul."
It took Dean a moment to say anything, as if he had to decide if he wanted to continue the conversation. Sam recognized his expression, the one that indicated he was going to push through this talk even though he didn't really want to. He'd grit his teeth the rest of the way. "It's possible. It turns you into a human monster. No conscience, no -"
"In the dream, Dean. It was possible in your Djinn dream. Don't know if it's possible in reality." He didn't see how it could work because when the soul left the body, the body died. How could a soul be gone and the body still live? It made no real sense unless there was a supernatural reason for it. "Was there a reason for it? Like supernatural?"
A weariness slid about Dean's eyes. "Cas. He raised you wrong. Noticed you weren't right and didn't bother figuring it out to fix it. He left you wrong."
"That's not like Castiel."
"I thought so, too." Dean snorted. "That dream. There was so much wrong with all of it, Sam. Lisa wasn't how she really is, but how she could have been. Same with Christian, Mark, and Gwen. They were all images, but waking up to find they're real people…. I have to figure that out."
"Explains some of your other remarks." Like the ones he made about the three that seemed to have no basis in reality. Dean was having a hard time getting to know Christian and Mark, like he had preconceived notions about them. Apparently, he did. He was having an easier time with Gwen. Did that mean he'd gotten along with Gwen in the dream? "Go on."
Dean turned his attention from the vehicles around them and onto Sam. His eyes narrowed and he leaned closer. Sam tried not to look away from that intense stare because Dean was still searching for anything out of the ordinary from him. He was still making sure he had his brother with him and not something else. "We ended up working for Crowley courtesy of Samuel."
"Crowley? Like hell we'd ever work with him again." It was enough to have worked with him to bring down Lucifer. He didn't want to ever have to repeat the experience, with Crowley or any other demon. He'd done that dance and it wasn't ever a good one.
"Aside from you, the worst of it was Cas. He betrayed me, betrayed us. He took dirty souls from Crowley to try to get enough power to defeat Raphael and it all went south so fast…. He…." He took another long drink and returned to watching the cars. "Everything was wrong. Everything I thought, everything I knew, was wrong and it just kept getting worse. Christian was possessed, Mark died, I killed Gwen, Cas broke your mind, and I kept thinking it couldn't get worse and it always did. More and more piled on. The sucky life of Dean Winchester." Finished the beer, he chucked the bottle at the line of cars directly in front of him. The bottle smashed with a crash.
"None of it's true, Dean. You've got to remember that. We killed the Djinn, rescued you, Lisa, and Ben."
"But Christian, Mark, and Gwen are real. Castiel is missing and Raphael may have started a fight with him."
"The Djinn filled your mind with lies. It's not reality."
"Maybe. So what do we do now? Hunt as a group? Drag the cousins around with us?" He gestured at the house. "Not to mention I'm still not one hundred percent sure we are related. Gwen did say the genealogy was surprisingly easy, like it was put there for us to find."
Sam shrugged. "So what? I don't care if we're related or not. They're good people."
"You think I should trust them." It wasn't a question.
"I think you should consider possibly trusting them sometime in the future. They've all got the protection tattoos and they're willing to keep in touch, which is more than some hunters are." Sam stood up and slid his hands into his front jeans pockets. "Look, we don't exactly have a wide circle of contacts these days, Dean. We have Bobby and Rufus and maybe a couple others left who don't blame us for the half apocalypse that took out a chunk of the population and woke up some nasty creatures." He'd been making calls while they'd traveled, trying to get in touch with contacts, and discovered that he and Dean were now notorious in the community. They were being blamed for the big events that happened whether they were responsible or not, scapegoats for every bad thing surfacing. To be fair, they had been directly part of both starting and ending the apocalypse, but some of those other things? They hadn't even been near them. "The rest are like Walt and Roy. They want our heads on pikes."
"No one came after me until the Djinn. I was sitting exposed. If they want us, me, so bad, why didn't anyone try for me the past year?"
"Did you ever think that maybe Castiel hid you, Lisa, and Ben before he disappeared? And Walt and Roy did come after me. Again."
"Maybe he did hide us somehow from hunters and other things. That'd explain it."
He was saying maybe a lot and Sam shrugged once more. "Let's look at where we stand right now. I'm back, with people we think are relatives and still might not be, we've got Bobby and Rufus, and there're a lot of people out there that need saving from the monsters. We've got a team here."
"Don't forget the angelic dropouts and a missing Castiel, a war between Meg and Crowley we'll be cleaning up from, plus a nice side of Raphael ruling the skies."
"Business as usual, Dean. There've always been powerful things roaming around without someone holding their leash. There've always been demons who don't agree with the current regime and there's always been an angel in charge up there who isn't exactly friendly towards humanity. And…." He hated to say it, but Castiel hadn't always been good about showing up when they asked him to. "Castiel may have other things going on and can't come down."
"Yeah, like maybe he's being reprogrammed by Raphael."
"We won't know anything until we see him again. We've tried every way we know how to call him. There's nothing more we can do except wait for him to come to us."
Not that they were going to simply wait. They'd keep calling for Castiel, over and over until he finally appeared.
Sam didn't let the tiny doubt of if he was even able to appear cross his mind. Neither one of them could think like that.
"Let me get this straight." Jo adjusted her position in the chair. "You weren't able to escape Raphael even with your new powers, so he captured you, tortured you, killed your followers, and sentenced you?"
She snorted. "Who made him judge, jury, and executioner?"
"We did, Jo. We all did. When Gabriel died, and Michael and Lucifer went into the cage. He's got the run of heaven by default, which is rather unfortunate. Few truly want him in charge."
"Great. So what do we do now?"
"I…." He looked helpless and uncertain. "We find Dean. My phone -"
"Broken. As is mine, only yours looks like someone beat it with a hammer a few times."
"I'll try another phone."
She waited patiently while he tried the landline, suspecting now that he'd have the same trouble she had with numbers and addresses.
"Peculiar." He frowned once more. "I can't remember their numbers, any of them, or even the address where Lisa lives. I should know all of those."
"Dean's girlfriend. He went to live with her after Sam was gone."
Girlfriend. "Oh." The news that Dean had a girlfriend these days gave Jo mixed feelings. There was happiness for him and regret that their 'wrong time, wrong place' would likely continue. She forced a cheery smile. "Well…. Good for him. After all the crap he's been through, he deserves a life."
He studied her. "I've said the wrong thing. You have feelings for Dean."
"No. No. We were friends and yeah, if he would have noticed me in the girlfriend way aside from a last night on earth lay, I might have…. We were friends. My feelings were a little more than a crush really. He's a great guy. Great. Who wouldn't see that and dream a little?" There was a slight chance she was protesting a little too much. "We were friends."
He directed an awkward smile at her. "It's been months. A year. He may not be with her anymore."
"Or they're very happy."
The silence that fell was strained and as awkward as his smile had been.
Castiel shifted his weight, hands gripping the edge of the mattress. "I'm injured."
"I know. I dressed your chest and stomach while you were out."
"My back has wounds as well." His jaw clenched.
Jo reached for the first aid supplies. "Okay. Take your shirt off and turn."
He eyed the cotton balls, antibacterial ointment, and bandages, making no move to undo the buttons on his shirt. "Is this necessary?"
"Can you heal them yourself?"
"No," he admitted.
"Then take your shirt off. I promise I won't swoon." She took a small plastic tub into the bathroom, filled it with warm water and came back out. He still hadn't moved to undo his shirt. "Don't tell me you're shy." She dropped a washcloth in the water.
The teasing remark had the opposite effect to what she'd thought it would. A flush darkened his cheekbones. "I don't care to be unclothed. The last time I was without clothes, I was in a hospital and was…human."
In other words, he'd felt vulnerable and hated it. Jo could relate to that. Before she could start to get all pleased about finding some sort of connection with him, he went on.
"Human and weak. Useless."
"Useless. Mmm. You know," she dunked the washcloth in the water, "for someone who claims to like us humans, you don't seem to like us. Why is that?"
"Humans are weak. It's a fact. You're all weak."
She rolled her eyes. "Says the angel who got his ass kicked by a bigger angel. Not to mention, according to you, Dean and Sam kicked the ass of the baddest of the angels right back into the cage and they're human. Your assertion doesn't track. Care to redefine your definition of weak?"
His lips parted and she saw a flicker of what could be respect in his eyes. "That was a Dean remark."
"Your statement totally deserved a Dean remark."
"I believe we may get along after all, Jo Harvelle." Castiel began unbuttoning his shirt.